Mexican Casserole

Mexican pasta casserole

I love sharing old recipes that I’ve been making ‘forever’, especially since it means I get to eat it after photographing it! Today I’m sharing my Mexican Pasta Casserole that I first tried 20 years ago at a girl friend’s dinner party. It was so good I knew I had to get the recipe from her, and I’ve been making it ever since – with a few tweaks to make it “mine.”

I would say this is a great dish to entertain with because it makes a LOT, and it combines 2 of our favorite flavors – Mexican and Italian.

Mexican Casserole

  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 can (16 oz) Tomato Sauce
  • 1 jar (15 oz) Picante Sauce
  • 2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • Large can French’s Fried Onions
  • 16 oz box Penne Pasta – cooked al dente

Brown the ground beef and combine it with the tomato sauce, picante sauce, and 1/2 cup of water. Add pasta, 3/4 of the onions, and 3/4 of the cheese; mix well.

Pour into a large baking dish and cover with aluminum foil. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Remove foil and top with remaining cheese and onions and cook for another 3 – 5 minutes or until melting & browning occurs.

Serve with a salad and enjoy!



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      • Joan says

        This looks very good. There are 2 sizes of tomato sauce, 8 oz. which I regularly get . It is 3″ high and a larger 15 or 16 oz. size that is about 5″ or more high. Is the can you get definitely the 16 oz. taller one? I just want to be sure before I make it next week. Thank you!

        • Chris says

          Hi Joan,
          Yes, the larger size. I was like you though – couldn’t recall if they come in 15 or 16 oz.

  1. Ruby Montou says

    Mmmmmm– sounds kind of blah with no onions, celery, bellpepper, no seasoning or anything just tomatoe sauches

    • Chris says

      Ruby, the onions are fried and placed on top, and there’s plenty of seasoning from them and the picante/tomato sauce blend.